With Restaurant Week hitting New York, I was excited to try out Norma’s for their all-day breakfast. The Restaurant Week deal was pretty sweet ($25pp for continental bread basket, entree and smoothie), and made the over-the-top prices seem more reasonable. We booked a table for 9am on a Thursday since I thought it would be a good time with Cheese’s naps. Sadly, when we arrived, we found out that the Restaurant Week promotion was only in effect from midday, despite this not being written anywhere on the Restaurant Week promotional material. Since we’d come so far and we already being led to our table, we felt like we had to sit down and order a ridiculously expensive breakfast. So disappointing.
Note to those visiting Norma’s for the first time. The dishes are all stupidly expensive. They average at about $21 an entree. They are huge however and will definitely fill you up for a while. Where you have to watch out is the extras that they they push on you. When we sat down, a waiter approached and gave us free samples of a smoothie (which we were supposed to receive as part of the Restaurant Week deal), and offered us glasses of juice from a pitcher instead of water. An unsuspecting diner might think this was either a) complimentary or b) reasonably priced. Just so you know, it’s neither. The orange juice is $9. Apparently you get unlimited refills, but still. $9. Be warned!
I was hoping that Norma’s would be really kid-friendly after I read their website. The whimsical, fun description of the restaurant is below:
“Breakfast for lunch? Always.
Will I still be hungry? You gotta be kidding.
Do we like kids? More than whipped cream.”
Sadly the reality was very different. While they did have a highchair, that was the extent of the baby-friendliness. The menu is so exorbitantly-priced that it’s way too pricey to order a kid their own meal, and there is no separate kid’s menu. Our waiter was aloof and made us feel unwelcome. The food took forever to come out. We had to break out the Cheddar Bunnies to keep Cheese amused while we were waiting.
Alec ordered the Sweet Suzy. He said it was amazing and was really happy with his dish.
I ordered Nutella Packed Jacks and while the fruit was really fresh and sweet, the pancakes were undercooked and doughy. Usually I’d send them back, but it had taken so long for us to get them that there wasn’t time before we had to leave and take Cheese home for a nap.
I have to make a note here to say that we came on a weekday – the restaurant may be more kid-friendly on weekends. If you’re keen to give it a try, book a table to minimise your wait. They have long queues every day of the week as they have a restaurant that seats 100 and service the hotel they’re housed in, which has 700 rooms.
Stroller storage: Minimal. Bring a folding stroller or carrier.
Easy access: Yes. They have elevator access.
Change tables: I didn’t get the chance to check out the restrooms, but there is ample space to change a baby on the benches in the foyer.
Kids’ menu: No, but lots of food kids can share with you. At an average of $21 per entree, you probably won’t want to buy them their own dish.
Baby-friendly rating: ♥—-
At Le Parker Meridien
119 W 56th St,
New York, NY 10019
Phone: (212) 708 7460
Christine is the editor of Adventure, Baby!